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Healthy Ireland Study shows need for Sugar Sweetened Drinks Tax

The Healthy Ireland Study published today highlights the need for the introduction of a sugar sweetened drinks tax in order to combat the levels of obesity in Ireland and associated chronic conditions.

Some of the main findings of the study are:

  • 32% of men aged 35+ in Ireland are obese
  • 27% of women aged 35+ in Ireland are obese
  • 16% of men and 16% women aged 25-34 are obese
  • 26% of those living in the most deprived decile are obese compared with 16% in the least deprived decile
  • 15% of the population drink sugar-sweetened drinks on a daily basis, with a further 24% drinking these at least once a week.
  • excessive consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks is a key contributory factor to obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Social Justice Ireland has called for the introduction of a sugar sweetend drinks tax in Budget 2016. Social Justice Ireland and the Irish Heart Foundation completed in-depth review of evidence on obesity and food poverty in Ireland in June 2015.  This report examines the future health costs of obesity and food poverty and makes a proposal for health related taxation as a policy instrument to address the challenge Ireland faces.